List Time!

So I’m trying to make this Calgary vs. Ottawa decision as objectively as possible, but I’m still having a lot of trouble with it. You might be thinking, “hey, you idiot, it’s not that hard of a decision.”

Well, it is for me, okay?

So let me look at the pros and cons for both choices and see if that helps me decide.

Calgary PROs:

  • University of Calgary is a research university and it’s ranked fairly high in Canada.
  • I’m already in love with the city, even after just watching some walking tours on YouTube.
  • I’d be about the same distance away from Moscow as I was in Vancouver, which was a pretty ideal distance.
  • The move up there won’t be too expensive and will only take a day (or two).
  • Mayor Nenshi!

Calgary CONs:

  • Monthly rent is approximately the same as in Vancouver (i.e., expensive).
  • Since my original supervisor is leaving, I’m basically going to get stuck with someone who didn’t originally want me. That’s really stressful to me, especially given my last supervisor/student relationship and how horrible that whole thing was.
  • I’m scared of the city flooding as badly as it did last summer.

Ottawa PROs:

  • My supervisor who’s moving there seems like a really nice and genuine person and really wants me to work with him.
  • I’d get more money there, especially if I decided to be a TA.
  • Lower cost of living than Calgary.
  • It’s the capital of Canada! How cool?
  • Carleton University (where my supervisor’s headed) has a math department that does a lot of things jointly with the University of Ottawa, which means a more diverse offering of classes.

Ottawa CONs:

  • I’d have to move all the freaking way across the continent again. Expensive and time-consuming and stressful.
  • I’m not “feeling” the city of Ottawa the same way as Calgary.
  • Carleton isn’t a research university. It’s actually the level below a true university, which is a bit concerning to me (it’s on the same level as Simon-Fraser University, which is a “comprehensive university” and not a research university).
  • I already have my study permit for Calgary; I’d have to get that changed if I go to a different school. PLUS I’d have to get all sorts of new paperwork showing that Carleton “accepted” me.
  • If I end up going for a PhD, one of the requirements that must be fulfilled is that I’d have to be fluent in another language enough so that I could read and comprehend a mathematical paper in said other language. While that’s a good skill to have, obviously, I am about as unilingual as a person can get and I don’t know if I even have the capacity to learn another language. Y’know, ‘cause I’m an idiot.
  • I’m scared of Quebec.



What sayest thou? Speak!

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